Categories
SaaS Sales

Active Listening

70% of salespeople are saying selling remotely is not as effective as selling in person. 😳 (survey by Corporate Visions).

They say, audience’s multi-tasking, limited interaction, and passive presentations are the main reasons. 😟

How do we help them? 🤔

Give more emphasis on Active Listening! 🎧

Most of you are already aware of what is Active Listening and why it is one of the most important skills in sales.

But do you know “why” it is more important than ever in the remote selling environment? 🧐

And do you improve your Active Listening skills in this remote selling environment? 😇

Learn more about it in a detailed post with a few actionable tips 👉: https://www.avoma.com/blog/active-listening-sales-skill-remote-selling

Categories
SaaS Sales Startup

How To Win Competitive Deals

The conventional practice is to convince prospects that your product is superior to your competitor’s.

But it’s not required. There is an alternative option.

It might be sufficient to convince prospects what’s good about your product with a clear, honest, and informative way.

I even have a slide in our Sales deck that tells prospects about the gaps in our product that they will miss in the near term when they switch over from our competitors to us.

If the prospect feels certain that your product is good, and appreciates your honesty, it’s very likely that they will still buy your product.

Categories
Marketing SaaS Sales Startup

The Most Exciting Part of Apple’s Product Announcement

The most exciting thing for me about Apple’s product announcements is not about their products.

It is about their website’s copywriting. 📝

They are one of the best copywriters in the world.

They make me believe everything they’re doing is the biggest, thinnest, lightest, and fastest. 😀

They convince me everything they’re launching is revolutionary, magical, and first of its kind. 🤩

They make it catchy too: E.g.,
• H2OK.
• 5G Speed. OMGGGGG.
• Blast past fast.
• Big news. Mini news.

If you’re a marketer, then you should read every single page and paragraph on their website.

Observe the word choices they’ve made.

Get inspired and steal what’s best.

Categories
Entrepreneurship SaaS Sales Startup

Predictable Salesperson

You have probably heard of Predictable Pipeline and Predictable Revenue.

But have you heard of Predictable Salesperson?

It’s the one who builds the Predictable Pipeline to deliver the Predictable Revenue.

Predictable Salesperson believes in – “You are what you repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”

She believes – how you choose to live your days is how you choose to live your life.

She’s putting in the time and effort every day to reach the success she truly wants.

She’s skipping binge-watching the new series because she’s working towards something bigger.

These are the decisions that define who a Predictable Salesperson is and how successful they become as a sales professional.

It’s about daily habits, not about the end goals.

How do you become a Predictable Salesperson?

Create a repeatable process for yourself that you can do every single day without fail.

Focus on actions you control rather than putting all the pressure on results that might not come.

Categories
Entrepreneurship SaaS Sales Startup

“Maybe” Is Not The Worst Response In Sales Anymore

The common adage in Sales is “maybe” is the worst response you could get from the prospect.

It’s better to get “no” than “maybe”.

“Maybe” is a land of hope. Reps shouldn’t waste time there and instead seek “no” and chase new opportunities.

But is it still true with the modern B2B and SaaS buying behavior?

With the power of buying is shifting to buyers, are Sales reps being forced to be very transactional?

Your prospects might have other burning fires going right now. Sometimes the need is there, but the timing is not right.

They’re getting the job done just fine right now. But the need could go stronger as their world evolves.

Just because it’s a “maybe” right now, it’s not a “no” in the future.

“You can’t turn a no to a yes without a maybe in between.” – Francis Underwood

What should Sales reps do when they get “maybe”s?

• List down the most common objections that cause your prospects to answer with a “maybe”.
• Educate sales reps to approach these objections with new sense of purpose and respect the buyer’s world.
• Craft an outreach email campaign to stay on “top of mind” and provide continuous education value.

And eventually when their need becomes stronger, their “maybe” will turn into a “yes”.

Categories
Product Management SaaS

The Future of SaaS and Enterprise Software

Most of the SaaS and Enterprise software is built mostly for single-purpose or single-user workflows.

In a cloud-first and remote-first work environment, we need a different kind of software.

All SaaS and Enterprise software will need to be:

• Intelligent out of the box
• Collaborative and real-time
• Deeply integrated across other workflow apps
• Secure & privacy enabled
• Super intuitive & delightful to use

These are “table stakes” requirements now.

Categories
Entrepreneurship SaaS Startup

There is No Plan B

When I was doing customer-development and searching for a co-founder for Avoma, people often asked me – “Are trying to throw this idea on a wall and see if it sticks?”

I hated that question.

There was no Plan B for Avoma.

I strongly believed in the problem with extensive customer research and the gap in the market.

I had a point of view to solve this problem and an ambitious vision of what the world would look like in 5-10 years.

I left the high-salaried full-time job without having a co-founder for 6 months, without having a prototype, or any sort of commitment and clarity on any milestone.

I never doubted my vision and the opportunity even though we had very (I mean really “very”) highly-funded competitors.

We had many investors rejected us because we had “many” highly-funded competitors who had already launched and were ahead of us in the market.

There is not even a single day since Avoma’s inception I ever thought about a Plan B.

There is no Plan B.

Categories
Entrepreneurship SaaS Sales Startup

I Have Fallen In Love with Selling

I’m an engineer by training. But have fallen in love with selling.

Here is why.

Selling is personal. Share your stories. Be vulnerable.

Selling is interpersonal. Meet new people. Build relationships.

Selling is collaborative. Get help from colleagues. Strategize with the team.

Selling is disciplined. Be consistent. Make and keep promises.

Selling is scientific. Follow the process. Learn from the best.

Selling is artistic. Be creative and solve problems. Make it unique.

Selling is hard. Face many rejections. Persevere until you succeed.

Selling is addictive. Win one, two, ten. Keep winning more.

Selling is rewarding. Create impact. Make companies successful.

Selling is mysterious. Wonder why it worked. Diagnose why it didn’t work.

Categories
Entrepreneurship SaaS Startup

Hiring for Passion, Not for Skills

In Nov 2019, we were a team of 7 people at Avoma, then by Jan 2020, we were a team of 13 people, and then by Mar 2020, we were 10 people again.

And no, these reductions are not due to COVID, but what I believe is due to passion (or lack of it).

Early-stage startups are a different beast (note, I didn’t say “hard”).

They require a different level of combination of skills and passion.

I think the mistake we made was – we primarily hired for skills and experience on resume.

But we didn’t hire for passion and grit.

We can teach new skills, product knowledge, subject domain, strategies, tactics, etc.

But I don’t think we can teach passion, drive, or grit.

I believe we should hire for passion and grit.

And then bridge the gap for skills and domain knowledge if there is any.

Categories
SaaS Sales

Playing Chess and Selling

My 8-year old daughter has learned to play Chess during this quarantine to keep the screen time under control. 😀

So I’ve been playing Chess with her pretty much every day and realized how similar it is to Selling.

As a Chess player and as a Salesperson, you have to:

1. Think several moves ahead

2. Have a game plan

3. Follow the steps, and not play for a quick win

4. Be flexible with your plan and adjust the course as per new scenarios

5. Learn from others’ game plans and strategies

6. Practice, practice, and more practice with different types of players

7. Play with confident body language

8. Be patient, resilient, and still stay sharp

The only thing that’s different is – in Chess, another person is your opponent.

In Sales, you and prospect are on the same team.

So in Chess, you aim for a win.

In Sales, you aim for a win-win.